How can Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu improve User Adoption for CRM 2011

 In Microsoft Dynamics CRM Blog

Do you want to improve user adoption on CRM 2011? Try Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

Although Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu teaches how to choke people or break their limbs, there is another thing that we can learn from BJJ techniques and that could be applied to improve user adoption.

I have been training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu with the World Champion Team Alliance here in Atlanta for over a year and half now. The reason Team Alliance has been a World Champion three years in a row is because of their foundation; the quality of instruction and time instructors put from the beginning ensure you learn BJJ techniques correctly from the start instead of having to correct bad habits later.

The most important thing that is taught at Alliance is “Position before Submission”. This means that if you go for a submission move before having a good position, your opponent will escape and you might find yourself on a bad spot after your failed attempt. On the other hand, if your position is perfect before you go for the submission, your opponent will have three options: Tap, Nap, or Snap. The chance of escaping a submission from a perfect position is almost zero.

“Position before Submission” can also be applied to User Adoption in CRM 2011. If the implementation of CRM is sloppy, users will have a chance to “escape” or to justify why are they not using CRM from go-live. If you invest more time to get in “position,” your users will have a very small chance of “escaping,” or not adopting the system.

Microsoft certainly understands this approach and exercised it when creating CRM 2011, starting with the design in Outlook. As many users spend most of their day working in Outlook, the most important thing for a CRM system to be utilized is that it is 100% compatible and seamless with Outlook. The Microsoft CRM for Outlook client does exactly that, allowing users to track Outlook records without ever having to leave Outlook. Other CRM systems require you to launch a separate application or site; this is the single biggest reason why companies fail to adopt a third party CRM solution.

Here are my Top 5 suggestions to get your CRM 2011 environment into the perfect position:

  1. Visibility: Ensure your users can only see the areas of CRM that they are supposed to see. Most implementers focus on the main entities in CRM (Account, Contact, Lead and Opportunity) but leave several dozen fields, lookups, and drop-down menus available for users to second guess themselves. Spend a good amount of time on your security roles and remove all permissions to entities your users don’t need. For example, if you don’t have SharePoint connected to CRM, why would you leave “Documents” available for your users to see? When we talk about CRM, simple is better.



  2. Data Quality: Use Audit and get rid of duplicates. If the information stored in CRM is modified incorrectly, you want to show users that the previous values of your data are safe on the Audit table. Remember that Audit stores the data value that was previous to the change and saves the date and time of the modification as well as the name of the user who made the change. The same applies to duplicate records. If users are trying to track emails regarding a particular record in CRM and they find duplicates, they will be confused and you will end up with activities tracked against multiple records in CRM. Always ensure quality of data. Good Data Quality produces Quality Reports and Dashboards.




  3. Run User Adoption Sessions: These sessions will allow users to ask “How-to” questions and voice their opinion regarding existing or new functionality or customizations on the system. Think about how Microsoft relies on users to find errors in the system and allow those users to “Send an Error report” to them so they can work on these issues and release fixes for them. In your case, users will point to the areas needing work allowing the admin to address these items for improved user experience. This is also a good time to see how much users are utilizing all the capabilities they have access to in CRM.



  4. Implement a User Adoption Dashboard: This will allow you to quickly find out who is using CRM heavily and who is not. Approach the users not utilizing the system and encourage them to use it. If they are having questions or problems with the system, help them and set them up for success. Some users find CRM “too complicated” or will mention that “it’s a lot to learn”.


    In these cases, I always compare CRM with their first smart phone. “Remember when you got your first smart phone? You thought it was too complicated and you had too much to learn? How would you feel doing your job without that phone today? That is the exact feeling they will have toward CRM over time. Here is a look to our base User Adoption Dashboard:

    This dashboard shows Number of Accounts, Activities, Contacts and Opportunities by Users in CRM. This will allow an administrator to see which CRM Users are not tracking data in CRM.


  5. Read our Blog: Zero2Ten is a Global leader in Customer Ads and Implementations, having added more than 5,000 new user CRM 2011 seats last year alone. Our professionals have made a commitment to share relevant information for free here in our Blog to help you engage your users and learn new CRM tricks often:


    As the individual charged with ensuring the best experience for CRM users and the adoption of CRM 2011, remember to always search for “Position before Submission”.


    If you would like more information regarding User Adoption, please contact us at:


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